PHOTOS: Williams Park gets ready for Christmas, opens Friday, Dec. 11

Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)
Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)
Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)
Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)
Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)
Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)
Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)
Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)
Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)
Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)
Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)Township employees test and finalize the Christmas light displays at Williams Park. (Ryan Uytdewilligen/Aldergrove Star)

Christmas at Williams Park is a go!

People will be able to access the park and all its displays for two weekends, Fridays to Sundays, Dec. 11, 12, and 13, and then Dec 18, 19, and 20 from 5 to 9 p.m.

After crews decked the trees and wrapped the serene space with lights, Dr. Bonnie Henry put a pause on all gatherings and events in mid-November.

Barbara Sharp, president of the Christmas in Williams Park Society, remained hopeful, as the setup was proposed as a drive-thru style event right from the start.

After drive-thru-style events were allowed on Monday, Sharp officially got the word on Thursday, Dec. 11 that the display could go ahead.

“Talk about 11th hour,” she laughed. “All the members of the committee are excited. People need something like this to make them happy.”

The holiday display is in its 30th year, and though musical choirs, hot cider, and fresh treats have all been part of previous years – Christmas at Williams Park will be drive-thru only! Sharp teased that there will be birthday cake next year to mark the 31st anniversary instead.

“People can only go around once. They’ll have to drive out of the park and get back in line if they want to see it again,” Sharp explained. “I’m confident we’ll get everybody through.”

Inside the park, volunteers who belong to the same household and bubble will be working together to usher cars along the path.

“Since we have no idea how many visitors to expect we cannot tell you how long the wait will be but the rules require us to allow 30 cars through the park and when those 30 cars are through we can allow 30 more and so on,” Sharp explained. “We know this might mean a bit of delay getting into the park and ask for your patience…..bring some hot chocolate to sip on.”

READ MORE: Holiday celebrations, Glow Gardens and Christmas at Williams Park, get go-ahead

Outside of Williams Park is a different story.

Sharp said a traffic management crew is required in order to hold the event so COVID restrictions, such as the number of vehicles allowed at one time, are strictly and safely enforced.

“It adds another $5,000 to our expenses,” Sharp explained, though she assures that the event is completely free.

Donations are welcome and touch-less or tap options will be available at the park when people visit.

“Anything you can afford is greatly appreciated but we do recognize this is a tight year for everyone and this is intended to be a free family event,” she noted.

People can also donate online at christmasinwilliamsparksociety.square.site.

Sharp encouraged people to check www.facebook.com/Christmas-in-Williams-Park-Society for any updates before visiting.

Williams Park is located at 68 Ave and 238 St. in Langley Township.

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Is there more to this story?

Email: ryan.uytdewilligen@aldergrovestar.com

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